Whose Performance Is It Now?
This paper outlines findings from an ongoing mixed-methods study on rater leniency in L2 speaking tests. The research finds a small but statistically significant relationship between two rater characteristics, “Agreeableness” and “Experience”, and “Rating Leniency”. Raters higher in agreeableness and/or experience give more lenient scores. The study then thematically analyses rater commentary to triangulate these findings with qualitative evidence.